Commentary Magazine review

Spies Like Them By Daniella Greenbaum Davis Isaac Shoshan was born in Aleppo in the early 1920s. The son of a janitor, he grew up poor, living in a small space with several other families, eating mostly flatbreads cooked with the help of cow dung. His mother died when he was a child, and he did not know his birth …

Foreign Affairs, Best of 2016

“Pumpkinflowers” is on the Foreign Affairs list of the best books of 2016, one of three in the “military, scientific, and technological” category. The list is here.

2017 Taylor Prize shortlist

“Pumpkinflowers” has been chosen as one of five finalists for the 2017 Taylor Prize for Canadian non-fiction. The five are: Pumpkinflowers: A Soldier’s Story of a Forgotten War by Matti Friedman Marconi: The Man Who Networked the World by Marc Raboy This Is Not My Life: A Memoir of Love, Prison, and Other Complications by Diane Schoemperlen By Chance Alone: A Remarkable …

Mother Jones: 20 Notable Reads of 2016

Mother Jones includes “Pumpkinflowers” on its year-end list of 20 recommended books, describing it like this: “This is a 21st-century war story, with all of the IEDs, propaganda videos, jihadi groups we’re accustomed to—but one told in the restrained, introspective style of the World War I writers Friedman turned to for inspiration. It’s partly an engrossing personal story, partly a history …

Booklist Editors’ Choice

Booklist has chosen “Pumpkinflowers” for its 2016 Editors’ Choice list. The editors write: “Friedman’s compelling narrative of what he learned by serving in the late 1990s as an Israeli soldier assigned to a vulnerable hilltop fortress in Lebanon, called the Pumpkin, is freighted with explosive geopolitical implications.” The full list is here.

National Post Top 99 of 2016

Canada’s National Post has chosen “Pumpkinflowers” as one of the top 99 books of 2016. The editors write: “Friedman recounts a small group of soldiers’ defence of a single hill in Lebanon as a microcosm for regional conflict and many asymmetrical conflicts worldwide. Friedman, one of those young soldiers, has gone on to become one of our most impressive narrative nonfiction writers.” …

Globe and Mail Top 100

“Pumpkinflowers” is one of The Globe and Mail‘s top 100 books of the year. The full list is right here.

New York Times Notable Book

The New York Times just published its annual list of the 100 notable books of the year. “Pumpkinflowers” is one of them. Check out the full list here.

Amazon’s Top 10 of 2016

Amazon’s editorial team has chosen “Pumpkinflowers” as one of the ten best books of 2016. The list: The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead: A brilliant, wise, fantastical yet grounded portrayal of a young slave seeking her freedom on a real underground railroad. The Wolf Road by Beth Lewis: Part literary thriller, part western, this is a debut novel about a …

PJ Media review, Sept. 2016

The ‘New Middle East’ That Never Was P. David Hornik Matti Friedman, a journalist and writer who moved from Canada to Israel in his late teens in the late 1990s, has written a powerful little book, Pumpkinflowers, that takes you deep into Israeli and Middle Eastern reality. The Pumpkin was a hill in the southern-Lebanon security zone, which Israel set …